Cold Case Murder Suspect Files Motion to Dismiss Charges

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cold case
Bernard Swaim represented by Public Defense Attorney Nick Yedinak.

WENATCHEE-The attorney for the man accused in the cold case murder of a Cashmere man contends Chelan County Sheriff’s Department botched the investigation and is now asking the court to dismiss the case.

Cold Case Reopened

Bernard Swaim is accused along with his former wife, Dawn Soles, of murdering Steven Smith in 1982. Smith had been reported missing but his body was never found. The case went cold until late 2016 when Smith’s disappearance was assigned to detectives for further investigation.

Cold case
Bernard Swaim and Steven Smith

Swaim was identified then as a person of interest based upon interviews with multiple people including Smith’s family members and witnesses. Swaim pleaded not guilty and his trial is set for August 22nd.

July 25th Hearing Set

His attorney, Nick Yedinak has filed a motion to dismiss the charges arguing that the County’s decision to delay charges for 34 years, and their mishandling of evidence over that time, caused prejudice to his client so that he can no longer receive a fair trial. A July 25th hearing in the matter has been set in Chelan County Superior Court.

Click on the link below for the PDF document of the defense memorandum supporting Swaim’s motion to dismiss:

Motion to Dismiss charges

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Steve Hair
Steve Hair is a 40-year veteran broadcast journalist who comes to NCW LIFE TV after a long career in radio. Steve and his wife Lynette and their three sons moved to the Wenatchee Valley from Central California in 1992. Steve served as News Director for KPQ News where he covered a multitude of stories of importance to North Central Washington, including two of Washington State’s largest wildfires. During his radio career Steve has received many awards from organizations such as the Associated Press, (Sacramento and Seattle Bureaus) The Washington State Farm Bureau, and the California Medical Association. Steve is a sports addict. Time off usually finds him sprawled out on the couch watching the Seahawks, Mariners or anything that prevents him from doing house chores.